Robert Reich: How Clinton and Obama Failed to Defend the Middle Class

David Sirota in AlterNet:

Untitled_design_182You argue that capitalism needs to be saved, but what is your response to polls showing many Americans want an alternative to capitalism?

If we could come up with something that was much different, we might want to try that, but even the Chinese who call themselves a communist nation practice a form of capitalism in terms of private property and the free exchange of goods and services. I think the real question is what I meant by ‘saving capitalism’: saving capitalism from the moneyed interests that are now distorting our system of capitalism in ways that make it very difficult for most people to get ahead.

The issue is not capitalism versus some other ism, because there really isn't another ism around. The question is how to organize capitalism so that big money doesn't make the rules.

The idea that there is a free market out there some place in nature that can exist without rules, without rules that are generated by politics, by government, by federal agencies and departments and state agencies and departments and legislatures and courts is absurd on its face.

These rules are necessary. They are constantly being changed and adapted and altered. They are, right now, more than at any time since the 1880s and the 1890s, the Gilded Age of the robber barons, they are being made by and for very, very big companies, corporations, Wall Street and economic elite of very wealthy individuals who were politically active. This is a huge problem. This generates the distress and cynicism and anger about a rigged economy and a rigged system that contributed to Donald Trump becoming president.

More here.